#BlueStarBrief May 2022

This Month in the #BlueStarBrief
It has been 11 weeks since Russian forces invaded Ukraine. In these 11 weeks, it is estimated that at least 46,000 people have lost their lives, with over 14 million Ukrainians displaced as they flee Russia's indiscriminate violence. As intelligence sources report that Russia is preparing for a prolonged war, western support in getting refugees out of harm's way and supporting Ukrainian defenders and their families is vital. We continue to support Ukrainian efforts to preserve their freedom and way of life however we can, and we hope you will do the same. To see how you can help support and stay updated, take a look at our March edition.

Here's what we have for you in this month's #BlueStarBrief:

France's Political Reshuffle Before the Parliamentary Elections

Gabriel Sánchez Zinny on The Three P's Threatening Freedom

A Look Ahead to the US Midterm Elections

An Update on the April Slovenian Elections

Blue Star Strategies Welcomes Amelia as Happiness Advisor
France's Political Reshuffle Before the Parliamentary Elections

Following the second round of the presidential election on April 24, Emmanuel Macron was reelected as President of France. He won the run-off with 58.54% of the votes while his far-right opponent Marine Le Pen only garnered 41.46% of the votes. However, Emmanuel Macron had beaten Marine Le Pen far more comfortably in the 2017 presidential election, garnering 66.1% of the votes to her 33.9% in that run-off. The considerably narrower gap compared to the 2017 contest highlights the increasing polarization taking place among the French electorate. Marine Le Pen may have lost the 2022 run-off, but she did so with a historically high score, gaining 2.6 million voters while Emmanuel Macron’s victory was somewhat lessened by the loss of 2 million voters compared to his 2017 result.

Read more about the election results, what they mean for Macron's next term, and what to expect from the new government here.

The Three P's Threatening Freedom
By Gabriel Sánchez Zinny

Russia's bloody invasion of Ukraine has brought the debate between democracies and totalitarianism to the forefront, between the ideas of freedom and self-determination of people versus state control and the oppression of citizens. This contrast of ideas and forms of government is not only impacting geopolitical order, but also the future of economic globalization, as we have seen in the impact on commercial integration and global production chains.

In this context, Moisés Naim’s latest book, The Revenge of Power, how autocrats are reinventing politics for the 21st century, comes at the right time to attempt to explain many of these phenomena, such as the increased assessments of authoritarianism, the impact of social networks in the spread of populism, and how democracies can fight these abuses.

Read more about Naim's book and the rise of modern authoritarianism here.  

Which Party Will Win the U.S. Midterm Elections?
By Blue Star Strategies' DC Team

While forecasts of a Republican sweep of the House and Senate grow in volume and confidence, the truth is that modern elections are far to volatile to predict this far in advance. It's too early to tell where voters will be in November, something demonstrated by the titanic shifts in campaign focus and political landscape in the 10 days since the draft SCOTUS decision overturning Roe v. Wade leaked.

Read more about the road to the midterms, which races to watch, and which voters are most important to the candidates here.

An Update on the Slovenian Elections
By Ben Hoffschneider

Slovenia held Parliamentary Elections on April 24. The newly-formed "Freedom Movement," led by businessman Robert Golob, won 41 seats in the 90-seat parliament, defeating incumbent Prime Minister Janez Janša's Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS).

Read more about the results of the election and the likely government here.

Blue Star Strategies Welcomes Amelia, Happiness Advisor

After being a vital part of the firm since her birth on July 4, 2018, Blue Star Strategies is happy to officially welcome Amelia, Duchess of Shaw, as the firm's Happiness Advisor.

Amelia supports our Latin America, Europe, and North America teams, welcomes clients and guests to our offices, and plays a vital part in keeping spirits high. Keep an eye out around Farragut Square during the work week and you may be able to catch Amelia brightening people's days.

Stay updated on Amelia's work by following her Instagram.
Thank you for reading this month’s #BlueStarBrief.

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